EmailDiscussions.com  

Go Back   EmailDiscussions.com > Discussions about Email Services > Email Comments, Questions and Miscellaneous
Register FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read
Stay in touch wirelessly

Email Comments, Questions and Miscellaneous Share your opinion of the email service you're using. Post general email questions and discussions that don't fit elsewhere.

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 28 Dec 2020, 06:38 PM   #1
lpn
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 51
recommendations for small business email with own domain

A friend asked me to suggest a good provider for small business email with own domain. Here are the requirements that we discussed:
  • The standard ones: very good uptime, standard protocols: IMAP, SMTP. No need of customized app and it should work with standard email clients on desktop and mobile. Web interface is not that important as email clients would mostly be used.
  • Excellent deliverability both outbound and inbound. Outbound volume would be relatively small -- at most dozen emails per day, mostly follow-ups of previous conversations. Initial emails mostly be in response to inquiry either in person or by phone, email or web form. For inbound there should be flexible filtering and definitely an option to disable all spam filtering as the cost of losing important emails could be relatively significant.
  • No minimum number of accounts - should start with 1 or 2. Reasonable amount of disk space -- say at least 5 GB per account. Some reasonable number of aliases -- say 10 for the domain.
  • 2FA for the web interface.
  • Relatively large organization that have been in business for a good amount of time, not one-man-show
  • No email systems provided by webhosts or registrars as these are typically not reliable.
  • No need for Active Sync or similar, IMAP IDLE would be just fine.
  • Ideally, possibility to do branding of the web interface and the IMAP and SMTP servers, but not mandatory.
  • Ideally, option for hiding the sender IP address even when using email client.
  • Reasonably priced, say ~ USD 5-6/mo.

Few provides that I have thought of:
  • G Suite -- not sure if support is good and there have been issues with people losing access to business mail for unrelated reasons, e.g. chargebacks on the Play store on their personal accounts.
  • Microsoft Outlook for Business and Office 365 -- from what I have heard many legitimate incoming emails end up in spam or just rejected.
  • Rackspace -- they have been good in the past but recent reviews have been less than favorable.
  • Fastmail -- from what I have read here, I not impressed recently by their changes over the past couple of years. I have dropped them several years back when they dropped the basic account that was paid one-off.
  • Mxroute -- people seem to like it, but appears to be run by just one person. Pricing is good though, but in this case is not the most important.
  • Luxsci -- seems pricey, haven't seen recent reviews.
  • Zoho -- from what I have read the support is sometimes lacking.

Does anyone have comments on these providers or any other suggestions. In particular, has anyone used servercow.de or mailbox.org with own domain?

Last edited by lpn : 29 Dec 2020 at 01:30 AM.
lpn is offline   Reply With Quote

Old 29 Dec 2020, 08:11 AM   #2
jeffpan
Master of the @
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Macao
Posts: 1,793

Representative of:
tls-mail.com
MXroute works nice for me
jeffpan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29 Dec 2020, 09:31 AM   #3
ioneja
Cornerstone of the Community
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 596
Leaving the really big providers out, as I can't recommend them in good conscience any more for too many reasons to list, I'd therefore lean towards FastMail and Runbox, which are both pretty close to your specs.

Your requirement -- "Relatively large organization that have been in business for a good amount of time, not one-man-show" -- is the only area that may be a concern, depending on what you really mean/want. Bigger does not mean better, though, but I understand you don't want a one-man-show. Both FastMail and Runbox are relatively small -- but everything is "small" compared to Google, Microsoft, etc.... microscopic by comparison in fact.

Fastmail and Runbox are veterans in the industry with a solid history overall IMO. Good people at both companies, long-term expertise and in the case of Runbox, I like their support more than FastMail, although I like FastMail's webmail better than Runbox.

If you want to try a German company, I like Mailbox.org, which also covers most of your requirements, and I like their privacy policy and jurisdiction better than FastMail.

Luxsci has truly superb customer support if you want to stick with the USA, and especially if you want to get into HIPAA compliant email. Can be pricey, but I haven't checked on them for a while, so I don't know their current offerings.

If you want to get all newfangled in terms of workflow, I'm currently impressed with HEY.COM, but they are a very new service and going through growing pains refining their service, although run by the veteran Basecamp team. They also haven't launched their business service publicly yet (still invitation only). More pricey, but might be worth a look if you like their workflow. I think they have some good potential.

Good luck!
ioneja is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30 Dec 2020, 01:43 AM   #4
lpn
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffpan View Post
MXroute works nice for me
Is their deliverability good? Can you disable any outbound filtering? How is support?
lpn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30 Dec 2020, 01:49 AM   #5
lpn
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by ioneja View Post
Leaving the really big providers out, as I can't recommend them in good conscience any more for too many reasons to list, I'd therefore lean towards FastMail and Runbox, which are both pretty close to your specs.

Your requirement -- "Relatively large organization that have been in business for a good amount of time, not one-man-show" -- is the only area that may be a concern, depending on what you really mean/want. Bigger does not mean better, though, but I understand you don't want a one-man-show. Both FastMail and Runbox are relatively small -- but everything is "small" compared to Google, Microsoft, etc.... microscopic by comparison in fact.

Fastmail and Runbox are veterans in the industry with a solid history overall IMO. Good people at both companies, long-term expertise and in the case of Runbox, I like their support more than FastMail, although I like FastMail's webmail better than Runbox.

If you want to try a German company, I like Mailbox.org, which also covers most of your requirements, and I like their privacy policy and jurisdiction better than FastMail.

Luxsci has truly superb customer support if you want to stick with the USA, and especially if you want to get into HIPAA compliant email. Can be pricey, but I haven't checked on them for a while, so I don't know their current offerings.

If you want to get all newfangled in terms of workflow, I'm currently impressed with HEY.COM, but they are a very new service and going through growing pains refining their service, although run by the veteran Basecamp team. They also haven't launched their business service publicly yet (still invitation only). More pricey, but might be worth a look if you like their workflow. I think they have some good potential.

Good luck!
Have you tried mailbox.org and is so, how do you find it?

I didn't think of hey.com, when I first looked at it, it seemed more oriented to people with much more email correspondence and busy workflows.

So far my thinking is that Fastmail might be the best contender as it matches most of the requirements, although I myself have mixed feelings about that provider. For that I was looking for other options.
lpn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30 Dec 2020, 02:29 AM   #6
ioneja
Cornerstone of the Community
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 596
Quote:
Originally Posted by lpn View Post
Have you tried mailbox.org and is so, how do you find it?

I didn't think of hey.com, when I first looked at it, it seemed more oriented to people with much more email correspondence and busy workflows.

So far my thinking is that Fastmail might be the best contender as it matches most of the requirements, although I myself have mixed feelings about that provider. For that I was looking for other options.
Generally, I try to have first hand experience with something before I recommend it, as I would hope most folks here would do! So I've either tried extensively, previously or currently use/pay for these services, among many, many more. Just like lots of folks in this forum are experienced as you know, using many services over the years. Long live email. And any suggestion I make is always with the caveat that you need to check things out yourself of course.

As for mailbox.org, I currently am doing a long term test (they are very affordable), and use them for a project I'm running, and so far I like them, quite a bit actually, although there are some minor peculiarities I'm not a total fan of, but overall, I think they're very good and worth a look. I singled them out in comparison to the others since I do like their privacy policy much better than US based services. But that might not matter to you. EDIT: And BTW, I consider mailbox.org sort of the last departure point before someone decides to go deeper into privacy with services like ProtonMail, Tutanota, etc.... It's a nice balance IMO, somewhere in between FastMail and ProtonMail in some ways, although their encryption is nothing to sneeze at either. Pretty balanced, actually.

Hey.com is one of a new breed of providers that tries to re-think the entire email workflow. I've done a very extensive test of it, really like it TBH, and have to say they show a lot of potential for anyone who wants to try their approach. If their approach appeals to you in any way, give them a good test yourself. Again, they are still doing the business service ("Hey for Work") on an invitation-only basis as of right now, but you can get a good idea of how they work and hopefully soon they will open up the domain and business side so you can use it closer to your specs. It's a paradigm shift for some people, but again for others it will not be helpful. YMMV. I am STILL waiting for my business invitation, after which I'll be setting up an account for a side business and see how it goes for a year before I move more critical mail to it.

As for the giant services like Google, etc., I don't ever recommend those any more, but if you have considered the various issues with them (actual service, support, features, privacy, politics, philosophical, moral, whatever matters to you), they are solid services and millions and millions of folks use them obviously, so you can be part of the Borg Collective if you want to go for it. Otherwise if you have any hesitation with them, I'd suggest going for the smaller specialized email service providers and checking them out first hand to see if they fit your needs. Nothing like a personal test... what floats your boat will be different than what floats someone else's boat.

As for FastMail, it's a safe choice based on the specs you laid out. They are not perfect, but no one is. They have a pretty good balance, I'm still hanging with them for some of my email, and I've found they are an easy departure point for GMail users, as I've now got several low-tech family members using FastMail and they are happy. Decent middle ground, great domain and alias features, pretty solid company, average-slow support, very good webmail and related app, nice people, good integrity track record over the years IMO, pretty good overall, issues notwithstanding. I still recommend them to folks who want to move away from the big monopolies but haven't yet decided to take the deeper, more committed plunge into services with stronger privacy policies, jurisdictions, and encryption needs.

Don't forget about Runbox though... for everything they lack in polish in some areas that FastMail seems to do well at, for example, they make up for it in other ways, and their pricing is outstanding. One of their support team in particular, who is also one of their co-owners, Liz, is particularly fantastic. She's a class act that makes me want to stay with them for many years. In fact, I think my subscription with them is now paid up through around 2024. Obviously one person is not a reason alone to stick with a service, but Liz is emblematic of their personal approach and care, and honestly, no matter what service you use you have to trust their people with your email, right? And I have come to trust Runbox.

Again, good luck!

Last edited by ioneja : 30 Dec 2020 at 02:52 AM.
ioneja is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30 Dec 2020, 10:04 AM   #7
Berenburger
The "e" in e-mail
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: The Netherlands
Posts: 2,700
Quote:
Originally Posted by lpn View Post
Have you tried mailbox.org and is so, how do you find it?
Just to mention that mailbox.org is more than only email. It also has cloud storage, calendar and other groupware features. The most expensive package has online word processing and such.
Berenburger is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30 Dec 2020, 01:03 PM   #8
ankupan
Cornerstone of the Community
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 784
You can try Zoho Mail too.

I have used Office 365, G Suite, FM, Protonmail, Rackspace and many more.

Current experience with Zoho is good. Even Price is not too much with their Workplace features.
ankupan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30 Dec 2020, 06:15 PM   #9
lpn
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by ioneja View Post
Generally, I try to have first hand experience with something before I recommend it, as I would hope most folks here would do! So I've either tried extensively, previously or currently use/pay for these services, among many, many more. Just like lots of folks in this forum are experienced as you know, using many services over the years. Long live email. And any suggestion I make is always with the caveat that you need to check things out yourself of course.

As for mailbox.org, I currently am doing a long term test (they are very affordable), and use them for a project I'm running, and so far I like them, quite a bit actually, although there are some minor peculiarities I'm not a total fan of, but overall, I think they're very good and worth a look. I singled them out in comparison to the others since I do like their privacy policy much better than US based services. But that might not matter to you. EDIT: And BTW, I consider mailbox.org sort of the last departure point before someone decides to go deeper into privacy with services like ProtonMail, Tutanota, etc.... It's a nice balance IMO, somewhere in between FastMail and ProtonMail in some ways, although their encryption is nothing to sneeze at either. Pretty balanced, actually.

Hey.com is one of a new breed of providers that tries to re-think the entire email workflow. I've done a very extensive test of it, really like it TBH, and have to say they show a lot of potential for anyone who wants to try their approach. If their approach appeals to you in any way, give them a good test yourself. Again, they are still doing the business service ("Hey for Work") on an invitation-only basis as of right now, but you can get a good idea of how they work and hopefully soon they will open up the domain and business side so you can use it closer to your specs. It's a paradigm shift for some people, but again for others it will not be helpful. YMMV. I am STILL waiting for my business invitation, after which I'll be setting up an account for a side business and see how it goes for a year before I move more critical mail to it.

As for the giant services like Google, etc., I don't ever recommend those any more, but if you have considered the various issues with them (actual service, support, features, privacy, politics, philosophical, moral, whatever matters to you), they are solid services and millions and millions of folks use them obviously, so you can be part of the Borg Collective if you want to go for it. Otherwise if you have any hesitation with them, I'd suggest going for the smaller specialized email service providers and checking them out first hand to see if they fit your needs. Nothing like a personal test... what floats your boat will be different than what floats someone else's boat.

As for FastMail, it's a safe choice based on the specs you laid out. They are not perfect, but no one is. They have a pretty good balance, I'm still hanging with them for some of my email, and I've found they are an easy departure point for GMail users, as I've now got several low-tech family members using FastMail and they are happy. Decent middle ground, great domain and alias features, pretty solid company, average-slow support, very good webmail and related app, nice people, good integrity track record over the years IMO, pretty good overall, issues notwithstanding. I still recommend them to folks who want to move away from the big monopolies but haven't yet decided to take the deeper, more committed plunge into services with stronger privacy policies, jurisdictions, and encryption needs.

Don't forget about Runbox though... for everything they lack in polish in some areas that FastMail seems to do well at, for example, they make up for it in other ways, and their pricing is outstanding. One of their support team in particular, who is also one of their co-owners, Liz, is particularly fantastic. She's a class act that makes me want to stay with them for many years. In fact, I think my subscription with them is now paid up through around 2024. Obviously one person is not a reason alone to stick with a service, but Liz is emblematic of their personal approach and care, and honestly, no matter what service you use you have to trust their people with your email, right? And I have come to trust Runbox.

Again, good luck!
Thanks a lot for your comprehensive opinion, to a good extend it mirrors my thoughts, but it is much better to have independent confirmation.
lpn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30 Dec 2020, 06:18 PM   #10
lpn
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by Berenburger View Post
Just to mention that mailbox.org is more than only email. It also has cloud storage, calendar and other groupware features. The most expensive package has online word processing and such.
Yes, indeed it is more than email. In this case however, only email would be needed and the other features would likely not be used. Nevertheless their Team Mail pricing seems reasonable even for email only.
lpn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30 Dec 2020, 06:20 PM   #11
lpn
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by ankupan View Post
You can try Zoho Mail too.

I have used Office 365, G Suite, FM, Protonmail, Rackspace and many more.

Current experience with Zoho is good. Even Price is not too much with their Workplace features.
From what I have read when Zoho works it works fine, but they have had issues if support was needed. Did you need to use their support and if so, what was your experience?
lpn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30 Dec 2020, 06:36 PM   #12
chickadee
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 78
chickadee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30 Dec 2020, 07:10 PM   #13
lpn
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by chickadee View Post
Can the consumer version of it (mail2world.com) be used with own domain?
lpn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30 Dec 2020, 10:32 PM   #14
TenFour
Cornerstone of the Community
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 943
If you need and use MS Office applications anyway it makes sense to at least consider Microsoft 365 for Business. The basic level is only $5 per month per employee and includes email at your own domain with 50GB of storage and 1TB of storage for files, plus online versions of the Office apps making it the cheapest online storage solution around. Love them or hate them, Microsoft's Office apps are the standard in most businesses. This also gives you company-wide calendars, contacts, Teams (for meetings), etc., which are critical to most businesses. Google's Workspace provides similar online productivity apps that are probably the second most used in the business world after Microsoft, but Google only provides 30GB of storage at the $6 per month level. Where Google's business offerings really shine are around email and online collaboration. Sharing in real-time documents, including editing, is excellent with Google's apps. Gmail is by far the best online business-grade email I have used in terms of spam filtering, reliability, and deliverability. No fuss, just works all the time. Nobody blocks Gmail or else they block most of the world. Fastmail is excellent for a smaller provider, and also includes contacts, a calendar, notes, and some file storage. No office apps, and not as much in collaboration stuff. I personally have never had a problem with FM customer service, though it can be a bit slow at times in responding. Nonprofits can get Google Workspace for free and can get Microsoft cheaply. Google and Microsoft offer 24/7 customer service via phone, email, and online. One advantage of the bigger players, like Google, Microsoft, and Fastmail, is that there are enough people using the services to generate robust online forums that can provide assistance and answer a lot of questions that customer service doesn't always do the best with.
TenFour is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30 Dec 2020, 11:00 PM   #15
ankupan
Cornerstone of the Community
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 784
I have all business account on Zoho which were earlier on G Suite.

It gives the same flexibility as G suite including other apps like write, sheet and so on.

30 GB space is equal. They have support number as well as admin panel has 24 hrs chat option too.

I am happy with them for quantity business accounts.

They have a desktop app too, which some of my users like a most. No headache of Email clients and their configurations/learning. It is same as their webmail.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lpn View Post
From what I have read when Zoho works it works fine, but they have had issues if support was needed. Did you need to use their support and if so, what was your experience?
ankupan is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT +9. The time now is 10:23 AM.

 

Copyright EmailDiscussions.com 1998-2013. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy